In the shocking developments, the England and Wales Cricket (ECB) has dropped two of the most senior players, James Anderson and Stuart Broad, for England’s upcoming Test series against West Indies.
The humiliating 4-0 loss against Australia in the recently concluded Ashes has already seen the likes of Ashley Giles, Chris Silverwood, and Graham Thorpe losing their jobs and now England’s two leading wicket-takers in Test cricket have been forced to follow the same route.
The selection panel comprising of Andrew Strauss, Paul Collingwood, and James Taylor have also sacked the six other members of the Ashes party featuring Dawid Malan, Jos Buttler, Sam Billings, Haseeb Hameed, Rory Burns and Dom Bess.
Though, Strauss – the ECB’s interim director of cricket – said the decision to drop Anderson and Broad ‘does not mean the end for them as England players.
“We feel that it is important to look at some exciting new bowling potential and give some added responsibility to other players who have featured previously. No one doubts the quality and experience that James and Stuart bring to the England set-up. It will be up to the new managing director and permanent head coach to decide whether they will be involved this summer and beyond. This selection of this squad is the start of a process and a journey to get England Test cricket back to where it needs to be, and the hard work starts now,” said Strauss in an official statement.
Alex Lees (Durham opening batter), Matthew Fisher (Yorkshire fast-bowler) and the uncapped Lancashire duo of Saqib Mahmood and Matt Parkinson have been included in the 16-member squad, while wicketkeeper Ben Foakes was recalled and will be the first choice keeper.
England’s Test squad for the West Indies tour:
Joe Root (c), Jonny Bairstow, Zak Crawley, Matthew Fischer, Ben Foakes, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Alex Lees, Saqib Mahmood, Craig Overton, Matthew Parkinson, Ollie Pope, Ollie Robinson, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood.